Home Ministry Takes The E-Route with Paramilitary Forces, Junking Paper​ Files from May 1

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The ministry of home affairs has adopted the digital route in dealing with the Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) and they have gone paperless with their files from May 1, News18 has learnt.

The ministry has made it clear to the paramilitary forces that official files will be entertained only if sent digitally instead of wasting paper, except in highly sensitive matters.

Since the ministry and forces often deal with extremely delicate and secret information, there was a hesitation in going paperless and using the E-Office system. But after a communication sent last month, all CAPFs have been asked to work 100% digitally with the MHA.

The home ministry has asked all the forces to communicate with it through E-Office and no file will be entertained in hard copy from this month. Officials say all files are moving digitally and more than 95% of work will be done through the electronic route from this month.

A senior home ministry official told News18 that this will save tonnes of paper and also a substantial amount of money.

“A letter was sent in the second week of April, asking all Central Armed Police Forces that only files sent through E-Office will be entertained from May 1. In various instances, the ministry has sent back files that were not forwarded digitally. Old hard copies of files have been converted into soft copies. Though other agencies like the National Investigation Agency (NIA) are still working through hard copies of files while dealing with the ministry,” the official said.

Sources told News18 that following the communication from the home ministry, all forces have gone almost 100% paperless from May 1.

Within the forces as well, the CAPFs have started communicating and working digitally with all the departments.

“We are now paperless. All communication with the ministry is paperless now and within the forces as well we are working digitally. If a file has some old correspondence and other documents, those can be scanned and attached through E-Files. Though there are exceptions, majorly it’s now digital,” a BSF official said.

Similarly, in CRPF, ITBP, NSG, and CISF as well, all staff members have been asked to work digitally and files are moving through the e-route.

“The system has a database. If one officer uploads a file, it can be accessed by entering the department, file number, etc. To sign the file digitally, officers in a few cases need an Aadhaar card and, after entering the one-time password, the file is signed digitally,” an ITBP official said.

Officials said that this will help them in tracking files, their movement, and their routes. It will enhance transparency in tracking files, increase accountability, and speed up file movement, they added.

“The E-Office aims to support governance by ushering in more effective and transparent inter and intra-government processes. The vision of E-Office is to achieve a simplified, responsive, effective and transparent working of all government offices. The open architecture on which E-Office has been built, makes it a reusable framework and a standard reusable product amenable to replication across the governments, at the central, state and district levels,” the E-Office website says.

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Originally published at www.news18.com

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